In large measure, the Oxford Law Faculty determines the broad structure of the Law degree at Hertford. This ensures consistency in academic provision across all of the Colleges in Oxford. A distinctive characteristic of the Oxford Law degree is that you will have correspondingly fewer options to choose in your Final year (currently two options out of nine Finals papers). The virtue of this approach is that you achieve a depth of legal understanding focused upon a range of compulsory core legal subjects that provide the building blocks of legal knowledge in England and Wales. Given the importance of the Law Faculty in administering the course and the examinations process, you may find it helpful to consult the relevant Faculty handbooks in order to gain a good understanding of the course. These important Faculty publications may be found here:
When you first arrive at Oxford, your first two terms will focus on three compulsory papers: Constitutional Law, Criminal Law and Roman Law. These will be examined at the end of your second term in Oxford (Hilary Term) in examinations called Law Moderations. You must pass Law Moderations to proceed further in the degree programme.
Following Law Moderations, you will then study nine papers, seven of which will be compulsory: Contract, Tort, Land, Trusts, Administrative Law, European Law, and Jurisprudence.
You may then choose two option papers in your Final year that can be tailored to your specific interests. These include subjects as varied as Family Law, Labour Law, European Human Rights Law, Public International Law, Company law, the law of Taxation, Medical Law and Ethics, Legal History, Comparative law and Criminal Justice and Penology. The availability of these option subjects will vary from year to year, so please do consult the current Faculty student handbook.
You will then be examined on these nine subjects at the end of your final year. The assessment process currently consists of nine three hour, closed book written examinations, though it is anticipated that Jurisprudence will in future be examined in part by means of an extended essay.